When you use composite fillings rather than the old metal amalgam fillings, you are able to restore your tooth to its natural color. While amalgam would leave a metallic look and potentially discolor surrounding teeth, composite fillings are able to matched your original tooth color.
There are very few drawbacks to a composite filling over an amalgam filling. Composite fillings do generally cost a little more than amalgam fillings, and they may wear faster than original enamel. Though despite these few negatives, they are more pleasing to the eye, and will not corrode and rarely need to be replaced.
Advantages of composite:
- Match color to make teeth appear natural
- Composite resin is strong and flexible
- Tooth can be used immediately after anesthetic has worn off
- Less chances of being damaged than metal fillings
What’s the Procedure Like?
A composite filling is a relatively short procedure and one of the most common dental procedures done today. When you arrive at our office, expect your visit to take about an hour. You will be given a local anesthetic to numb the area of the tooth. Once the area is significantly numbed, your dentist will drill away any decay.
Once the decay has been cleared from your tooth, your dentist will apply the composite resin that is color matched to your natural tooth structure. The filling will then be cured with a special light that hardens the resin. Now your tooth is ready to use, though it is recommended that you do not try to eat or drink hot liquids until the anesthetic has worn off.
What to expect:
- The procedure itself usually last about an hour
- Novocain can last anywhere between 2 and 4 hours
- Tooth can be sensitive to cold or hot after procedure
What Kinds of Problems Can Composite Fillings Fix?
Whether you have a chipped tooth or extensive gum-line decay,composite fillings can help. The most common use for composite fillings is to repair teeth that are suffering from decay. Decay will need to be drilled away before a composite filling can be placed.
There are many reasons your dentist would suggest composite fillings over the amalgam ones. They are more reliable and look better. No matter what the reason may be, you will be happy with the fact that the procedure is quick and leaves you with little pain after the anesthetic wears off.